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## The enumeration of plane tropical curves

• Tropical geometry is a rather new field of algebraic geometry. The main idea is to replace algebraic varieties by certain piece-wise linear objects in R^n, which can be studied with the aid of combinatorics. There is hope that many algebraically difficult operations become easier in the tropical setting, as the structure of the objects seems to be simpler. In particular, tropical geometry shows promise for application in enumerative geometry. Enumerative geometry deals with the counting of geometric objects that are determined by certain incidence conditions. Until around 1990, not many enumerative questions had been answered and there was not much prospect of solving more. But then Kontsevich introduced the moduli space of stable maps which turned out to be a very useful concept for the study of enumerative geometry. A well-known problem of enumerative geometry is to determine the numbers N_cplx(d,g) of complex genus g plane curves of degree d passing through 3d+g-1 points in general position. Mikhalkin has defined the analogous number N_trop(d,g) for tropical curves and shown that these two numbers coincide (Mikhalkin's Correspondence Theorem). Tropical geometry supplies many new ideas and concepts that could be helpful to answer enumerative problems. However, as a rather new field, tropical geometry has to be studied more thoroughly. This thesis is concerned with the translation'' of well-known facts of enumerative geometry to tropical geometry. More precisely, the main results of this thesis are: - a tropical proof of the invariance of N_trop(d,g) of the position of the 3d+g-1 points, - a tropical proof for Kontsevich's recursive formula to compute N_trop(d,0) and - a tropical proof of Caporaso's and Harris' algorithm to compute N_trop(d,g). All results were derived in joint work with my advisor Andreas Gathmann. (Note that tropical research is not restricted to the translation of classically well-known facts, there are actually new results shown by means of tropical geometry that have not been known before. For example, Mikhalkin gave a tropical algorithm to compute the Welschinger invariant for real curves. This shows that tropical geometry can indeed be a tool for a better understanding of classical geometry.)
• Ebene tropische Kurven zählen